1) Odor gets eight games
Texas Rangers second baseman Rougned Odor could possibly miss this weekend's series with the Houston Astros. MLB Network's Jon Heyman is reporting that Odor has been suspended for eight games after clocking Jose Bautista on Sunday.
The tension was still high between the two teams after Bautista's memorable bat flip in the ALDS. Bautista was hit by a pitch in the eighth inning in the final game between the Blue Jays and Rangers. My guess was to avoid any retaliation from the Blue Jays in the series. But it felt more cowardly than a calculated move.
Odor to exception to Bautista's slide into second and the two scrapped. Odor rocked Bautista with a right hand before Adrian Beltre wrapped up the Blue Jays' slugger.
Sure, it's a fun video to watch but the punch won't help the Rangers in the long run. At the moment, Odor is staring down an eight-game suspension which he plans to appeal. If the appeal process is resolved by week's end, Odor will be out of the lineup for the three-game series against the Astros.
Odor is batting .300 (36x120) with 15 extra base hits, 16 runs scored, and 24 RBIs against the Houston Astros. I don't think any Astros player or fan will be said to see Odor out against the Astros for three games.
2) J.J. Watt Charity Classic
J.J. Watt is an all around great dude. His charity does great work. I bring the event up as a subject not to reflect on him but the idea of click bait.
This article screams the same vain as the zero Nielsen rating stories about the Astros back in 2013 and 2014. The story was written by ESPN's Texans beat writer, who I understand needs content to write about each day.
But is it necessary to take a swipe at the Astros when talking about charity event? Great the event outdrew 13 Astros games. The Astros play 81 games at home, there are going to be slow days at the park. The team will play get-away games at 1 p.m. and face teams that are also in the dumpster that necessarily a draw.
The charity event tickets have been on sale since November of 2015. The Texans own the Houston sports lexicon and especially J.J. Watt holds a grip over the city. So it is no surprise that he was able to propel sales past the lower selling Astros games. Watt is able to fill a 70,000-plus seat stadium eight times a year, so I'm not surprised.
My point is this story isn't anymore more than a title click bait.
3) Miss you Brad
Brad Ausmus, current Tigers manager, and former Astros catcher was one of the most entertaining ejections in 2016. Ausmus was ejected after a called strike three on an inside pitch to Nick Castellanos. To punctuate his frustration, Ausmus took off his hoodie and placed it on the plate.